Self Help Cannot Save Us

As someone who wants to grow and become a better person, I understand the value of self-help. There are some great resources out there, especially online, and I’m thankful. I’ve consumed content online that has helped me with my parenting. I’ve consumed content online that has helped me become better organized. I have consumed content online that has helped me understand traumatic events within my life and how these have contributed to my sinful nature.

However, no amount of knowledge can change who I am—and I’m a bit skeptical of the effectiveness of self-help. I know that we can improve ourselves. Many people do. I also know that there must be a limit, because if we could simply help ourselves, we would not need Jesus.

I’ve been focused a lot on self-help related issues for the past year or so, and though I have learned a lot, I have not had much success in applying what I have learned to my life as consistently as I’d like to—and this is because I need more than just man’s understanding—I need the healing power of Jesus. Only He can work the changes I need.

I know this, and I have known this for a while. However, I became frustrated because I was not receiving the change from Jesus that I wanted, and I felt responsible for doing all that I could do to make things better.

So, I learned about the things I wanted to learn about, and I did my best to heal myself. I still acknowledged my sin to the Lord and I still prayed about these things, but my heart was not fully in it. I did not fully believe that Jesus would help—and the more I tried to help myself, the less I believed He would.

There are other problems with self-help.

If we are able to experience some change, then we might become proud and impatient with others. We might think, “If I can do this, then so can you.” This mindset does not bring glory to Jesus, and this mindset causes us to lose patience and kindness with others.

I see a lot of that in the realms of psychology and self-help. I see a lot of pride in one’s self and harshness, accusations, and unforgiveness towards others.

I also see a lot of encouragement in things that are very much “the wisdom of this world” and not the wisdom of God. I see a lot of encouragement in things that would push people away from Jesus and not to Him.

I also know that no matter how much we are able to help ourselves, we cannot save ourselves. We cannot heal every wound. We cannot spot every sin and repent of it. We certainly cannot forgive ourselves.

So, though I have some appreciation for the insights we can gain from self-help and psychology in general, I know that these things cannot save us—and in many instances, these things can actually lead us further away from Christ, and in some of the most deceptive ways.

That is why I am including a “recovery” theme within this ministry.

I know that there is valuable information out there, and any true information is given by God. However, I also know that man can corrupt what is good and true, and without Jesus we will. I also know that Jesus has the best answers, and the world of self-help and psychology can seduce us away from Him.

So, I want to share the valuable insights I have learned, but with a Christian mindset that considers the wisdom of God and not the wisdom of this world.

My hope is to attract people who are wounded but would otherwise rely on self-help and psychology instead of Jesus. These are people who are very often “poor in spirit” and desperately seeking for answers and someone who cares. I want to, in some small way, lead these wounded people closer to the One who can really help—and the One who can forgive them also.

I still need healing too. I know I am healed by His blood, but I also believe that I should see this healing in my life—not just theoretically or judicially through the imputation—but in this present life and present world. The scriptures declare this to be true, and I need to hold onto that faith no matter how much some want to discourage that.

I still need to trust in Jesus more and stop trying so hard to fight my nature on my own. I know that we are participants in our salvation, and I want to do what I can, but I don’t want to allow my striving to replace seeking Jesus as sincerely as I could.

2 thoughts on “Self Help Cannot Save Us

  1. The new Spirit we receive at salvation needs to be allowed through the truth contained in the scripture about our new nature (His nature) to make that Romans 12:2 transformation. Self-help only tries to prop up the old man, which is eventually bound to fail as before. The proper response to the old man it to die to it. 2 Corinthians 5:17

    Liked by 1 person

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